Much as though I dislike spiders I appreciate their cunning fly and wasp catching skills. This is the time of year when Common Garden Spiders are busy spinning their beautiful webs to catch a fly for breakfast.
In the garden you may have felt a gossamer of fine spider-silk brush against your face. What you may not have noticed is the tiny spiderling attached to the end of it. After hatching, spiderlings will climb somewhere high and shoot several silk threads into the air, forming a triangular shaped parachute. The spider will then be swept away on the breeze to pastures new. Most likely this is a few yards away, but if the conditions are right spiders could sail on the breeze for miles. Spiderlings have been detected in atmospheric data balloons collecting air samples at slightly less than 16000 ft above sea level, and can survive for 25 days without food.
Once a spider has landed in its new home it will be hungry. Some spiders, like the common garden spider, try to catch flies and other insects in a web. Other spiders prefer to hunt for prey. Exposed to the elements and mean children with sticks, webs get dirty and torn, so lots of spiders make a new one every day in order to get a fresh catch of the day – a fly.
Flies are truly horrible creatures and if spiders can keep them out of my home then maybe I’ll try and like them a little bit more.
Flies are a nasty package of bacteria, flitting from human food, to animal food and carcasses, garbage and excrement. For every fly you see there an estimated 19 more hidden from view. This means humans don’t even see 95 percent of flies present at an infestation. Yuk!
There are more than 100 pathogens associated with the house fly. These pathogens can cause disease in humans and animals including typhoid fever, cholera, bacillary dysentery, hepatitis, tuberculosis and infantile diarrhoea. To ensure that their customers don’t get sick, food-serving premises install electric fly killers which are highly effective at removing high volumes of irritating flies and their annoying bzzzzzz.
If the scary spiders are making an impact in the fly population in my house that would be much appreciated. I haven’t spotted any flies in my house which probably indicates I’ve an active spider population. So long as they don’t come near me, we’ll get along just fine.